Boxwood, a National Historic Landmark, is one of the earliest horse farms in Middleburg, Virginia, a region of American colonial and Civil War history. Originally settled in the eighteenth century, the farm became a well-known horse farm, the home of General Billy Mitchell, a pioneer of military aviation, and now the site of Rita and John Kent Cooke’s Boxwood Winery.
To accomplish this goal, John Kent Cooke asked renowned viticulturalist Lucie Morton to design the sixteen acre vineyard and Purdue University Professor of Enology Richard Vine to advise architect Hugh Newell Jacobsen on the design of the state-of-the-art winery. In 2006 Stéphane Derenoncourt, one of Bourdeaux’s greatest winemakers, became consultant to Boxwood. Today Stéphane works with Boxwood’s viticulturalist, winemaker and executive Vice President Rachel Martin, in developing the best blends for each vintage.
The Boxwood Estate Vineyard boasts the tightest planting on the east coast. The 19 acre sustainable vineyard blankets the slopes of this historic farmland on its highest elevation. Every vine and grape are treated with tenderness and respect, producing elegant wines with depth, complexity and finesse.
Boxwood Estate Vineyard is comprised of 3 blocks; A, B & C Blocks with an average elevation of 535ft above sea level. The vineyard is Purcellville Silt Loam with Gneiss, Shist and Granite bedrock. A-Block, planted with Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc comprises the highest portion of the vineyard with the most well drained, loose and rocky soil in the vineyard. The exposition of A-Block varies from North West to South. B- Block, planted entirely to Cabernet Sauvignon has considerably more clay limiting the growth of the vines, exposition is North West. C-Block, planted entirely to Cabernet Franc, has varying soils with rocky thin soils at the northwest edge and slopes slightly to the southeast with increasing clay content.
The climate in Virginia varies from year to year, which is one of the reasons our vintages vary in characteristics and blend content each year. In general Virginia experiences warm days and cool nights with moderate rainfall from early spring through early June with temperatures and humidity increasing in July and August. September and October offer more moderate temperatures and drier months for the grape harvest.
The Middleburg AVA (American Viticultural Area) in Virginia is home to 200 square miles in Loudoun and Fauquier Counties, and in 2012 was the seventh AVA established in Virginia. Boxwood Winery initiated the six year petition process to establish Middleburg as an AVA in 2006. Located about 50 miles west of Washington, D.C. and surrounded by the Blue Ridge Mountains and Potomac River, the Middleburg AVA has nearly 24 winemaking facilities. Major grape varieties include Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Merlot and Viognier.